White Columns is pleased to present the first New York exhibition of collaborative paintings by California-based artists Erin Allen, Keith Boadwee and Isaac Gray. Installed in a dense ‘salon’ style, creating an immersive and claustrophobic environment, Allen, Boadwee, and Gray’s White Room exhibition comprises more than 40 oil on canvas paintings produced over the past year. Invoking a legacy of more than a half century of ostensibly ‘bad’ painting, a slippery category whose genealogy might include Magritte’s Period Vache, Asger Jorn’s peinture détourné, Otto Muehl’s painterly provocations, 1970s era works by Neil Jenny, the post-punk painters of the East Village scene, and maverick figures such as Albert Oehlen, Martin Kippenberger, and Jiri Georg Dokoupil, amongst others, Allen, Boadwee, and Gray’s works are informed and united by a kinship and attitude that remains decidedly idiosyncratic. Their works are by turn scatological, caustic, sardonic, and strangely sincere. In a manifesto-like statement the artists address something of the impetus and motivations behind their collective endeavor:
“Standing alone against the world is not only futile and fruitless but overly romanticized, as well. Selfish pursuits are ultimately self-destructive. Communal ones can be too, but the myth of the self-destructive artist - that you have to suffer for Art - We have always had an aversion to this idea.
We work together making paintings. Our work is about The Cult, The Brotherhood and The Secret Society of painters. It is about exchanging information, sharing knowledge and how that information is then assimilated, altered and tweaked by each of us. The paintings are about sex and drugs and rock and roll and life and death and nature. They are about having fun with friends. They are metaphors for The Primal Scream.”
- Erin Allen / Keith Boadwee / Isaac Gray, 2010
Erin Allen lives and works in Oakland, CA. MFA, California College of the Arts, SF, 2008.
Keith Boadwee lives and works in Emeryville, CA. BA, UCLA, 1989; MFA UC Berkeley, 2000.
Isaac Gray lives and works in Oakland, CA. MFA, California College of the Arts, SF, 2010.
Collaborative works by Allen, Boadwee, and Grey were previously shown in “Denim On Ice”, Steven Wolf Fine Arts, San Francisco, 2010.